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About Koper

This city has had almost as many names as Elizabeth Taylor has had marriages (7 to her 8 marriages) and a few more facelifts besides, but then it does date back to 1500 BC. Its proximity to Italy, and crucially its time under the rule of Venetian Republic may leave you a little confused - you'll know you're in Koper, but it will look an awful lot like Venice (minus the canals). Given its ripe old age, you'll find numerous historic buildings; our favourite - and the best place to head if you're a first time visitor - is the Praetorian Palace in the main square.

 

Shore excursions in Koper

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

Hop and Taste Bus Tour

Activity lowRefreshments includedShopping

Duration: 6 hours

Enjoy the convenience of a Hop-On Hop-Off bus, sample local delicacies and discover the surrounding towns at your own pace.

The Slovenian coast stretches for 48km, featuring 4 major towns: Koper, Izola, Piran and Portoroz. Each possesses its own unique atmosphere and charm. Your Hop-on Hop-off bus service will operate continuously throughout the day, stopping at each town in rotation. Guides will accompany each coach, providing an introduction to the region and neighbouring towns.

Izola is a traditional, fishing town, with characteristic narrow streets and seafood restaurants scattered along the Riviera.

Piran, with its Venetian architecture and pastel colours, is one of the oldest towns in Slovenia, viewed by many as an ‘open air museum’. Stroll up to the church and marvel at one of the best panoramic views on the coastline.

The resort town of Portoroz is home to the only sandy beach in Slovenia. With numerous, bustling cafés along the seafront, this is the perfect place for people watching throughout the summer months.

Your free time in each town will be enhanced by the opportunity to enjoy a selection of local produce. Tasting coupons will be issued on the coach, which can be exchanged for samples in each town.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. Passengers are free to explore each town at their own pace and the amount of walking undertaken is at passengers’ own discretion. Buses operate between the towns and the port throughout the day on a free-flow basis, the schedule will be confirmed by the Shore Excursions team onboard. Passengers will receive tasting coupons for each town which can be exchanged for samples. Tastings may include, but are not limited to: local wines, ice cream, olive oil, seafood, cakes and pastries. Tastings may vary depending on the time of year and availability of products within each town.

Koper Walking Tour

Activity high

Duration: 2½ hours

Enjoy a guided walk through Koper, and discover the history, legends and culture of this ancient Istrian capital.

Koper was once an important island port involved in sea trade, with historical evidence indicating that Captain John Smith may have visited during one of his many voyages. Many of the buildings from centuries past still stand tall today, giving Koper its decisively Venetian charm.

Your guided walk takes you through the narrow streets, exposing the impressive architecture spread across the city. In the centre of the old city is Tito Square, an austere piazza surrounded by Venetian-style 'palazzi'.

From here, stroll along the cobbled ‘Cevljarska Ulica’ towards the Praetorian Palace. Dating back to the 15th century, this fully restored gothic palace is the city's most recognisable symbol. The great Venetian painter, Vittore Carpaccio, spent the last days of his life in Koper, and in his memory, one of the city's largest town squares is named after him.

Your stroll continues on to the Muda Gate, the former entrance point of the city, which only allowed admittance for the rich citizens of the town, with the less fortunate having to use the remaining gates in the southern part of the city.

Your final stop will be at Koper Museum. The exhibition of Slovenian Contemporary History, begins with the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and displays the diversity of Slovenia's history. A refreshment will be served at a local café, after which, you will be able to return to the ship at your leisure.

Essential information

There is approximately 2 hours’ walking throughout this tour, with steps, cobblestones and uneven ground to be negotiated, plus some inclines. This tour is not recommended for passengers who experience difficulties walking or standing for prolonged periods.

Lake Bled and Island

Activity highShopping

Duration: 6½ hours

Experience the beauty of Lake Bled, with its backdrop of mighty mountains and deep green forests.

One of the best-loved highlights of Slovenia and the Julian Alps, Lake Bled is a pristine, alpine lake, hosting the only island in Slovenia, Bled Island.

Your tour begins with a coach drive to the town of Bled. Sheltered by picturesque mountains, its charm has attracted visitors worldwide, many who return regularly. At the lakeside, traditional wooden boats, known as ‘pletna’, will be waiting to take you on a 30-minute scenic cruise over to the island, which sits elegantly within the centre of the lake.

Historically, the island was inhabited by ancient Slavs, who worshipped Živa, goddess of love and fertility. Catholic pilgrims later came to the island to worship at the Church of St Mary. Here, you will find the wishing bell, which, according to legend, makes your dreams come true when rung twice.

You will have approximately 1½ hours of free time around the lake to relax in the romantic Alpine scenery. Perhaps treat yourself to the famous cream cake that has been proudly produced in Bled for centuries. Visit the castle, located on the top of a sweeping cliff or simply sit back and admire the amazing views, before your coach journey back to the ship.

Essential information

The journey to and from Lake Bled is approximately 2 hours each way. Upon arrival at Bled Island, there are approximately 99 steps to negotiate from the boat to the church. The terrain around the lake is generally paved, although some areas are uneven. No meals or refreshments have been included on this tour to allow for flexibility during passengers’ free time.

Ljubljana On Your Own

Activity mediumShopping

Duration: 6½ hours

Explore Ljubljana, Slovenia's capital city, at your own pace on this full day tour.

The name of Slovenia's capital city, Ljubljana, derives from the words 'the beloved one'. This is just a hint of the lasting impression this eclectic city will leave you with. Hidden within its streets lie traces of a historic past combined with the contemporary present.

During your coach transfer from the pier to the city, your guide will introduce you to the colourful history of this region, with suggestions on how to make the most of your time in Ljubljana.

On arrival, you will have the option of taking a short, guided introductory walk with your guide, or alternatively, you can set off straightaway to explore at your own pace.

There will be approximately 3½ hours of free time in Ljubljana. Spend your time as you please, whether it's shopping, sightseeing or simply sitting back and relaxing, as you watch the world go by on the riverbanks.

You guide will provide details of the meeting time and location, for your coach journey back to the ship.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. The journey to and from Ljubljana is approximately 1½ hours each way. The amount of walking undertaken on arrival in Ljubljana is at passengers’ own discretion. No meals or refreshments have been included on this tour to allow for flexibility during passengers’ free time.

Scenic Slovenian Coast and Countryside

Activity lowRefreshments included

Duration: 4¼ hours

Enjoy a relaxing tour of the Slovenian coast and countryside, through 3 diverse landscapes.

Discover the heart of the Slovenian region as you explore Koper’s countryside and enjoy a scenic coach drive along the coast. After departing from the quayside, you will have a brief stop in the village of Hrastovlje. Capture the views with your camera and savour the sight of the Church of Holy Trinity; the best-preserved medieval church in Slovenia.

Your drive continues through spectacular scenery, passing picturesque villages and traditional stone houses as you make your way to the coast of Slovenia to visit the charming fishing town of Izola.

Here there will be free time for you to take a leisurely stroll or perhaps simply relax in one of the many cafés and watch the world go by.

Your final stop will be in the town of Portoroz, Slovenia’s oldest seaside resort and known for its splendid beach. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to sample some locally-produced ice cream whilst enjoying the impressive views of the coast.

The tour concludes with a relaxing drive back to the port, through hills and villages.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. The majority of sightseeing is conducted from the coach, however for optimum enjoyment; passengers must be able to undertake some amount of walking at each stop. Passengers wishing to view the interior of the church must be dressed appropriately.

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